The Halifax Board of Selectmen met on Tuesday April 11, 2017. The meeting included a hearing about Heron Road potentially gaining its status as a public street.
Real estate professional Rick Springer from Century 21 Classic Gold in Carver, MA presented the case for the roads approval to the Board of Selectmen. Springer spoke with the Halifax Planning Board. He says, “The roadway and the drainage was built according to the plan, and the Planning Board has accepted it as built.”
With the Planning Board being satisfied with the completed project, Springer wants Selectmen to certify Heron Road as a public road. He told selectmen, “It was always intended to be a public town road when it was first proposed. It’s now complete and time for it to be a public road.”
Selectmen Chair Troy Garron says he has no major issues with the Herron Road project. He did however express one concern.
Garron said, “The only issue I have right now is that the neighbors or residents of the neighborhood weren’t notified because you were out of town.” Springer said he has the abutters’ list and will be sending out certified mail notices before the next hearing on Tuesday, April 25, 2017.
One abutter who attended Tuesday night’s meeting voiced some personal concerns, stating the sidewalk in front of his home was not depressed to the same level as his driveway, making the transition coming out of his driveway to the road not smooth. He wants the project to take the time to lower the sidewalk first to improve the transition onto the road. The Planning Board voted 3-1 to approve the road and this resident would like the situation to be looked at again.
Garron told the resident there will be two more opportunities to present his case; there’s another hearing for Herron Road on Tuesday April 25. Garron said there will also be an opportunity to present the case at Town Meeting.
Beautification Committee Appointment highlights plans for memorial garden and Clean-Up Day.
Selectmen also met with the town’s Beautification Committee, who introduced Greg Cowan, their choice as a new committee member. Selectmen voted to approve his appointment.
Cowan has volunteered on several Beautification Committee projects in the past, including last year’s Town Clean-Up Day. He’s also volunteered with the local Boy Scout troop.
The vacancy on the committee is a term that expires in June, 2017. Selectmen Clerk Kim Roy says this is just procedural though and Cowan’s term will be renewed in June.
After confirming Greg Cowan as a new member, Cowan spoke to the Board about the Earth Day town clean-up event being sponsored by the Beautification Committee.
Cowan said that last year, the participation in the annual event was largely done by the Boy Scouts. He wants to not only expand this, but include education for the town about not littering. Cowan said he wants their clean-up efforts to be sustainable over a longer period of time.
The Earth Day Clean-Up Day will take place on Saturday April 22, 2017 from 10-11:45 a.m. This is a rain or shine event. Pizza will also be provided at the Halifax Town Hall at noon for all participants.
The Beautification Committee recommends anyone who participates wears long pants, long sleeves, and brings rubber gloves. Trash bags will be provided. Please remember to use safety precautions when picking up trash. If needles are found, the Beautification Committee said to call the Fire Department.
The Beautification Committee also presented plans for a garden to be built on the green of the Town Hall. The garden is a memorial for Margaret Fitzgerald and will be privately funded by family and friends.
Selectmen said the funds donated to the Town of Halifax will then be appropriated to the Beautification Committee. That’s the legal procedure for using privatlye donated funds for a public project.
Though still in the planning phase, the Beautification Committee is moving quickly on the project and close to deciding what types of flowers and trees will be in the garden. The plan is to have the garden ready for Memorial Day Weekend.
Other Town News
Cemetery Superintendent Robert Badore sent a letter of resignation to the Board of Selectmen. Selectmen Vice Chair Thomas Millias says that Bob served the town for 46 years.
Selectmen Clerk Kim Roy said she met with the Finance Committee, who were talking about putting the fire suppressant system for the Elementary School repairs under the levy in regards to tax.
Roy says that Town Administrator Charlie Seelig is more inclined to go above the levy. Seelig says this will not cost taxpayers any additional money.
Selectmen also spent time preparing for town meeting by addressing changes to the way Wage and Personnel Board goes about pay increases for town employees.
Board of Selectmen Vice Chair Thomas Millias said the town currently uses merit increases to go about annual reviews. Millias described the current system in place as “hurtfully subjective.”
The Board is considering eliminating merit increases alltogether and replacing them with increases to longevity stipends.
The next meeting of the Halifax Selectmen is scheduled for Tuesday April 25, 2017. Open session will start at 7:30 p.m.